Throughout South Africa, the awarding of property rights to poor people is particularly challenging because the homes they live in are stuck in complex systems of land registration.
South African billionaire Johann Rupert and his wife, Gaynor, worked incredibly hard with the local officials of Stellenbosch and the Free Market Foundation to emphasize the legal status of bad property ownership. Hundreds have been passed over to the land registry, more to come.
The couple has given Kaya Mandi, Klapmuts, Kylemore, Franschhoek, and Le Roux 132 full title deeds. This was achieved through Rupert’s generosity and the support of the Mayor of Stellenbosch, Cllr Gesie van Deventer, and her team working with the Free Market Foundation (FMF) Khaya Lam (my home) on land reform at Stellenb’s historic town hall.
During his speech before the ceremony of the title deed, Johann Rupert said that his family was incredibly fortunate in the wealth they had acquired and needed to make use of it for the greater good.
“It is easy to give away money but more difficult to find organizations that spend the time to use the funds properly and efficiently,” he said and commended the FMF and Khaya Lam for their ability to do this.
The FMF has championed the cause of turning the different forms of colonial titles found in townships into a complete, unmistakable property of current owners for over 40 years. Ruperts has currently financed 1,000 titles in Stellenbosch and 1,000 in Graff Reinet, where Dr. Rupert’s father Anton was born. To date, 585 title documents have been given in Stellenbosch and there will be more to come.
Johann and Gaynor Rupert have made a significant difference in the lives of ordinary South Africans and, in particular, the poorest people living in Stellenbosch in cooperation with Khaya Lam and the Municipality. The popular goal is to bring about a true economic and social change through ownership of property. As soon as the occupants enter the building, they enter the hall as tenants. Once they leave, they become homeowners in possession of a completely tradable freeholder property, taking their first step towards more real economic empowerment.
The ceremony was also attended by Master of Ceremonies Tabiso Mfeya (Head of Planning and Economic Development at Stellenbosch), Leon Louw (Executive Director FMF), and Temba Nolutshungu (President of Cape Town at FMF).